Chicago’s summer is in full swing as the city sees relaxed COVID-19 mitigations and more of a return to normal in the past two months.
From the Auto Show and Pokémon GO Fest to Tacos and Tamales Fest and White Sox games, there are plenty of ways to soak up the Chicago sun this weekend.
Here are some things to do in town this weekend:
Take a tour of the Chicago Auto Show
The Chicago Auto Show returns to the city this weekend for the first time in more than a year, after taking a hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Auto Show runs this weekend through Monday, shorter than the usual nine-day race that takes place in winter. It will also be held indoors and outdoors for the first time since its Chicago debut in 1901, officials said.
Here’s what you need to know.
Satisfy your cravings at Pilsen’s Tacos and Tamales Fest
The Pilsen Neighborhood Taco and Tamales Festival will give residents a chance to satisfy some cravings this weekend.
Until Sunday, people can enjoy Mexican food, live music, and art in front of the murals by renowned artists on 16th Street.
For more information, click here.
Catch ’em all at Pokémon GO Fest
A giant Pokémon GO egg can be found in Chicago’s Maggie Daley Park this weekend as part of a global virtual event for players around the world.
Niantic has chosen 20 cities to host in-person activities for Pokémon GO Fest from Saturday at 10 a.m. to Sunday at 6 p.m., with Chicago being the biggest event, organizers said.
The event will consist of live legendary Pokémon raids with trainers from around the world, all teaming up to catch rare Pokémon characters, which will be hurled onto a 50-foot-tall egg, according to organizers.
Stroll through the Chicago Botanical Garden
The Chicago Botanical Garden in the suburb of Glencoe is open this weekend from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., although the Rose Terrace closes at 3 p.m. on Saturdays.
Due to COVID-19 mitigation measures, all visitors must register in advance to walk around the gardens and wear a mask indoors if they are not vaccinated against the virus. Weekend parking is free for members and costs $ 30 for non-members.
Visit a Chicago museum
Chicago museums are returning to their normal opening hours this past weekend, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced, as part of Chicago’s full reopening.
However, some museums will continue to implement COVID-19 protocols. The Shedd Aquarium still asks visitors to purchase tickets in advance, but will no longer require vaccinated guests to wear masks.
Watch a White Sox game
The White Sox play the second game on Saturday of a three-game series against the Houston Astros at 6:15 p.m. and again Sunday at 1:10 p.m. The team will stay at guaranteed rate until Wednesday for a three-game series. games against the Minnesota Twins.
Savor a bite to eat at Chicago restaurants indoors or out
Chicago restaurants and bars are allowed to return to full capacity during phase 5, and allow fully vaccinated customers to walk around without face coverings.
However, some establishments may choose to keep COVID-19 restrictions in place until further notice.
While Chicago expected sunny skies and warm temperatures this weekend, many might be looking for places to drink and dine al fresco. The city is known for its food scene, filled with numerous patios and rooftops.
Choose Chicago has offered a list of places that currently offer outdoor dining in Chicago. Here are some highlights:
Avli Tavern: 1335 W. Wrightwood Ave.
Beatrix Fulton Market: 834 W Fulton Market
Beatnik on the river: 180 N Upper Wacker Dr.
Aba: 302 N. Green St. 3rd Floor
Ema: 74 W Illinois St.
Mesler: 1401 E. 53rd Street
The duck inn: 2701 S. Eleanor St.
Theater on the lake: 2401 N. Lake Shore Dr.
Beatnik on the river: 180 N. Upper Wacker Dr.
BOKA: 1729 N. Halsted St.
Formento: 925 W. Randolph St.
Siena Tavern: 51 W. Kinzie St.
Offshore: 1000 E Grand Avenue
Wood: 3335 N. Halsted St.
Happy camper: 1209 N. Wells St.
Tzuco: 720 N. State St.
LuxBar: 18 E. Bellevue Pl.
Browse the Frida Kahlo exhibit in suburban Chicago
The legendary life and remarkable works of artist Frida Kahlo are on display this summer in the Chicago area in the new Timeless exhibition.
Open until September 6, the Cleve Carney Museum of Art and the McAnich Arts Center at the College of DuPage in the suburb of Glen Ellyn showcase 26 original pieces by the 20th century artist.
Take a trip south to see Cavern Opening Weekend for the first time in over 10 years
The southern Illinois caverns reopened to the public for the first time in more than 10 years this summer, after being closed due to extreme caution, officials said.
The South Attraction has reopened as another place residents can take advantage of as the state moves into Phase 5 of its coronavirus reopening plan. Until October, the caves will be open from Wednesday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Take a swing at the Maggie Daley Park mini-golf course
The Chicago-themed 18-hole miniature golf course and Maggie Daley Park’s ribbon are open daily. In summer, the ribbon changes to welcome users of scooters, rollerblades and roller skates. Weekend rentals are now available.
Choose seasonal produce at a town farmer’s market
As the city enters Phase 5, more farmers’ markets across Chicago will begin to welcome residents again for the 2021 season.
While some markets have not announced official plans for a summer reopening, others have released schedules and information regarding upcoming launches after last year’s closures due to the COVID pandemic.
Cruise down the Chicago River or Lake Michigan by boat, kayak
Admire the city’s iconic architecture as you cruise along the Chicago River on one of the many boat tours. The 90-minute tours run every hour and a half and cost $ 40 for an adult and $ 18 for a child.
Due to COVID-19 mitigation measures, boat trips to Wendella require passengers to wear face coverings while on board the ship and practice social distancing.
Trying to see the city’s skyscrapers from a new perspective? Guided tours and kayak rentals take you down the Chicago River to Lake Michigan.
Enjoy the skyline while relaxing on Chicago’s lakeside beaches
Chicago’s beaches along Lake Michigan were opened to the public with lifeguards on duty over Memorial Day weekend and saw many residents come out to enjoy the water.
The city’s beaches were closed during the summer of 2020 in accordance with COVID-19 restrictions.